Wednesday 6 May 2020

#BlogTour Overboard by Ivy Ngeow

It's a pleasure to take part in the Blogtour for Overboard by Ivy Ngeow today.
About the Author
Ivy Ngeow was born and raised in Johor Bahru, Malaysia. A graduate of the Middlesex University Writing MA programme, Ivy won the 2005 Middlesex University Literary Prize out of almost 1500 entrants worldwide. She has written non-fiction for Marie Claire, The Star, The New Straits Times, South London Society of Architects’ Newsletter and Wimbledon magazine. Her fiction has appeared in Silverfish New Writing anthologies twice, The New Writer and on the BBC World Service. Most recently, her story was published by Fixi Novo in an anthology.

Ivy won first prize in the Commonwealth Essay Writing Competition 1994, first prize in the Barnes and Noble Career Essay Writing competition 1998 and was shortlisted for the David T K Wong Fellowship 1998 and the Ian St James Award 1999.

Ivy has been a highly-accomplished multi-instrumental musician since childhood and won fifth prize (out of 850 entrants) in the 2006 1-MIC (Music Industry Charts) UK Award for her original song – Celebrity, when she formed her own band, Satsuma (2005-07). Her songs are funky, modern and eclectic, with strong urban grooves and lyrics. Satsuma has played headlining gigs at top London venues such as: The Marquee Club, The Troubadour Club, The Water Rats, The Betsey Trotwood, Plan B and Clockwork.

Follow @ivyngeow on Twitter, on Facebook, on Amazon, on Goodreads, Visit, Buy Overboard

About the book
Thailand. An epic storm. A shipwreck. A white man has been found alive.

But who is he? Suffering horrific injuries and burns, he is taken to a local hospital. He is mute. Everything is a blank. They tell him his name. That is all he knows. When his Chinese wife arrives, he has no choice but to return to London to her family. He starts getting better with care and more surgery until one day… he’s assaulted. And he knows why.

The blow brings back a dangerous memory. But he’s crippled, disfigured and penniless… and he’s living the life of the man they think he is. What will he risk to uncover the truth?

This begins with a man who doesn't know his own identity - recovering somewhere in a hospital. Sole survivor of a shipwreck. A  man with no memories - luckily the world and people around him know. It all remains a bit of a mystery until he returns home with his wife and gets attacked. It turns out ending up in hospital wasn't an accident.

Multiple characters across various locations in the world are introduced and often seem completely unrelated, but the author draws each thread in slowly like a patient fisherman reeling the reader in. Each line is skewered with different bait.

It's a thriller, a slowly drawn picture of menace and mystery.

Although this is written with multiple character narratives the man who begins the story is the one who drives it in more ways than one. I wasn't too keen on the second person narrative, however I wondered if that wasn't an attempt to differentiate him from the others. To draw a line between and the other characters with him by himself on one side. It makes his narration appear blunt, abstract and often mixed with an air of arrogance and privilege.

At the same time he is speaking to himself. You are here, you are alive, you feel and you exist. When combined with the very specific writing style it gives the whole story a clipped modern feeling, which Ngeow tunes up by intermittently interjecting with a more lyrical voice. It's an interesting experience.

Buy Overboard at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Leopard Print Publishing; pub date 24 Jan. 2020. Buy at Amazon com.

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